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07 May. 2024


From Ukraine to Turkey: what types of residence permits Ukrainians can issue in Turkey in 2024

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From Ukraine to Turkey: what types of residence permits Ukrainians can issue in Turkey in 2024

The vast majority of Ukrainians in Turkey do not have refugee status and obtain a residence permit through the standard procedure for foreigners. Find out what types of residence permits Ukrainians can apply for in Turkey in 2024 and what they need to do

Legal assistance on migration issues for Ukrainians in Ukraine and abroad
Legal assistance on migration issues for Ukrainians in Ukraine and abroad

Due to the full-scale war of russia against Ukraine, more than 844 thousand Ukrainian refugees left for Turkey. According to the Embassy of Ukraine in Turkey, as of the beginning of April 2024, about 23 thousand people remain in the country. The absolute majority of Ukrainians staying in Turkey do not have refugee status, but receive a residence permit in the standard way for foreigners.

What types of residence permits can Ukrainians obtain in Turkey in 2024? We will find out further.

How long can Ukrainians stay in Turkey?

Citizens of Ukraine can stay in Turkey without a visa for up to 90 days. If you plan to stay in the country for more than 90 days, you need to apply to the office of the State Migration Service of Turkey at your place of stay to obtain a short-term residence permit. Usually, this permit is valid for 1-2 years.

Types of residence permits available to Ukrainians in Turkey in 2024

Since Turkey is not a member of the EU, Ukrainians cannot acquire the status of temporary protection here, which is issued by other European countries.

Citizens of Ukraine cannot become refugees (or conditional refugees), because the states do not have a common border.

In 2024, Ukrainians in Turkey can issue only:

- short-term tourist residence permit;

- humanitarian residence permit;

- status of international protection.

Short-term tourist residence permit for Ukrainians in Turkey in 2024

Short-term tourist residence permit is the most common type of permit issued by Ukrainians in Turkey.

How long does it take to issue a short-term residence permit?

The Migration Service of Turkey issues tourist permits for a period of up to 1 year, but for Ukrainians in some cases their term is extended to 2 years.

Rights of Ukrainians staying in Turkey on the basis of a short-term residence permit

It is legal to live in Turkey, be treated in local hospitals, take out loans and mortgages, buy cars and get a local driver's license, open a business, learn English and/or Turkish for free, children of permit holders can study in public schools.

What is prohibited under the permit?

A tourist permit does not provide a work permit. It is issued separately on a general basis.

List of documents for obtaining a tourist permit for residence in Turkey:

- Valid biometric passport.

- Child's birth certificate (if there are children), translated and apostilled.

- Housing rental agreement certified by a notary public.

- Biometric photos.

- Insurance policy.

- Address of the National Electronic Alert System (UETS).

- Check for the payment of the permit registration services.

- In addition, they may request a certificate of registration of one of the communal services for you - gas, electricity, etc.

- Completed questionnaire on the website of the Migration Service.

A short-term tourist residence permit in Turkey is most often issued by Ukrainians who have a permanent place of residence in Turkey (for example, you rent an apartment), as well as a stable income (outside Turkey) or savings.

Humanitarian residence permit

The basis for obtaining a residence permit for humanitarian reasons can be an emergency situation: for example, if a foreigner cannot leave Turkey and return to his country due to hostilities, and at the same time the applicant does not have the opportunity to apply for another type of permit.

It is worth noting that each application for a humanitarian permit is considered separately. It is necessary to submit a package of documents to the migration office at the place of residence.

A humanitarian permit also requires self-registration of medical insurance. The advantage of the permit is that it does not prohibit travel outside the country.

However, just as in the case of a tourist visa, a humanitarian visa does not give permission to work - for employment, a separate document is drawn up according to a generally approved procedure.

Usually, a humanitarian residence permit is issued for 1 year.

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Status of international protection

Turkey does not grant Ukrainians the status of temporary protection, but you can apply for a subtype of international protection - secondary protection. In fact, this is the so-called refugee status. It is issued for a year with the possibility of extension, and most importantly, 6 months after applying for the status, you can work without additional work permits. Another nice bonus is that registration of secondary protection is free.

To get secondary protection, you can come to the local branch of the migration service without prior registration - there is a separate Ulusrarasi karuma desk, as well as English- or russian-speaking employees.

State authorities conduct an interview with applicants within thirty days from the moment of submission of the application. Based on the results of the review, applicants may be granted refugee status or secondary protection. In general, the registration procedure takes up to 6 months.

List of documents for obtaining the status of international protection in Turkey at the link.

What rights does the status of international protection give to Ukrainians in Turkey?

Legal stay for 1 year, the right to work 6 months after receiving the applicant's permit, free public health insurance, education in public schools, housing assistance if you have nowhere to live, the ability to open a bank account.

Limitation of international protection status

However, it is necessary to remember that this status will limit you in moving around the country and leaving it. You will be required to stay within the province in which you applied for international protection. Departure from the province is possible after the permission of the migration service. Leaving Turkey before obtaining the final status (the first 6 months after submitting the documents) will invalidate the receipt of international protection. That is, at any time you can voluntarily refuse international protection and return to Ukraine, but in this case your status will be lost. Also, the status provides for periodic control by the migration service - once every two weeks you will have to register there.

We remind you! Ukrainians actively apply for residence permits in Turkey, including through a simplified procedure. The main thing before submitting documents is to decide on the grounds for obtaining a permit and study the list of necessary documents for obtaining a permit. Step-by-step instructions on the procedure for obtaining an ikamet (residence permit) in Turkey in 2024 at the link.

Want to know more? Read the latest news and useful materials about Ukraine and the world in the News section.

The consultation of a specialized specialist will help to understand all the intricacies of obtaining a residence permit in the Republic of Turkey.

Ihor Usyk is the Head of Legal Department at Visit Ukraine

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